By Andy Tarnoff Publisher Published Jan 22, 2009 at 12:03 PM

A lot of people have asked me this week why I haven't written anything about the yet-to-be-announced departure of Brewers radio announcer Jim Powell to the Atlanta Braves. The truth is, that while I've known about it for some time, I couldn't write anything, since everything Jim -- who is more of a friend than a peer -- has told me, has been strictly off-the-record.

All the news that has started leaking out is unattributed, and while I hate losing a scoop, this was one case in which my friendship with Jim, and the confidence in which he shared information with me, trumped my desire to be the first to write the story. While it's widely known that he's out the door, he hasn't spoken to anyone on the record, and if I learned anything in Reporting 101, it's that publishing a story without a source is almost always a bad idea.

If I know one thing about Jim, it's that he always takes the high road, and like every HR story, we'll never hear all sides and all angles about what makes someone change jobs. When privy to this kind of story, journalists need to decide when is the right time to burn a source or a friendship. And this is not one of those times.

I will say that as both a Brewers fan and a Jim Powell fan, this is unpleasant news. I'll miss hanging out in the booth with Jim and talking baseball with him at Spring Training. I'll miss the insights of shooting the breeze with someone who watches more Brewers baseball than anyone outside the dugout, who has the unique perspective a broadcaster who can straddle the line between insider and media. Some of the stuff he's shared with me over the years, while not top secret, is the kind of trivia that is not easily acquired.

As a Brewers fan, it will take me some time to get used the "new guy." I love the sweet sounds of Bob Uecker as much as, or maybe more than, the next guy. But for Uecke's great story telling and his loquacious narration, Jim complimented him so perfectly with detailed and thoughtful analysis. Jim could've been the perfect heir to the Brewers broadcasting throne, and I'm left disappointed that it didn't happen.

So, now fans are left to start over. In the offseason, not only did we lose CC Sabathia, but we lost two great talents in Powell and FSN's Trenni Kusnierek. Right now, hope isn't springing very eternal -- but honestly, I felt the same way when Pat Hughes departed for the Cubs, and eventually I got over it.

Outside the ballpark, I'll miss Jim and his wife, Emmy, on a social level, too. I'll miss our semi-regular double dates, our off-season cocktails and our Spring Training laughs. But I know I'll see the Powells again when they come to town, and maybe I can finally cajole Jim into blogging for us -- now that he's freed from the strangely possessive shackles of Journal Broadcast Group. And I know I've got a place to stay if I ever find myself in Atlanta.

When it all becomes official, I can cover this topic again, but this time with quotes. In the meantime, I offer my off-the-record congratulations to Jim Powell and to the Atlanta Braves. Brewers fans have lost a great asset, and we all hope someday, maybe, we'll hear you again calling games in Milwaukee.

Andy is the president, publisher and founder of OnMilwaukee. He returned to Milwaukee in 1996 after living on the East Coast for nine years, where he wrote for The Dallas Morning News Washington Bureau and worked in the White House Office of Communications. He was also Associate Editor of The GW Hatchet, his college newspaper at The George Washington University.

Before launching in 1998 at age 23, he worked in public relations for two Milwaukee firms, most of the time daydreaming about starting his own publication.

Hobbies include running when he finds the time, fixing the rust on his '75 MGB, mowing the lawn at his cottage in the Northwoods, and making an annual pilgrimage to Phoenix for Brewers Spring Training.